I understand that Sam Bradford is the #1 pick in the NFL draft. I understand that he deserves #1 draft money. I understand that the Rams feel the need to pay #1 draft pick money. What I don’t understand is why the Rams picked such a ridiculous amount of money to give to an unproven player. The St. Louis Rams and QB Sam Bradford came to terms on a deal where Bradford will get a potential $76 million with $50 million guaranteed over six years. That makes him the highest rookie ever. The Rams are getting a pretty good reputation of ruining good quarterbacks with their shaky offensive line. Marc Bulger didn’t get his shoulder injury by throwing 100 passes a game, the line couldn’t keep him upright.
So with a shaky offensive line and a quarterback that has already had a serious shoulder injury, the Rams have decided to make Sam Bradford ultra rich whether he pans out or not. #1 quarterbacks are a high risk/high reward, and lately the reward side hasn’t panned out for many of the teams.
Here is the last #1 drafted quarterbacks in the last 10 years:
|Team||Player||Year Drafted||Contract Amt(guaranteed)|
|St. Louis Rams||Sam Bradford||2010||50 million|
|Oakland Raiders||JaMarcus Russell||2007||32 million|
|San Francisco 49ers||Alex Smith||2005||24 million|
|San Diego Chargers||Eli Manning||2004||20 million|
|Cincinnati Bengals||Carson Palmer||2003||16.4 million|
|Houston Texans||David Carr||2002||14 million|
|Atlanta Falcons||Michael Vick||2001||3 million|
Excluding Bradford, four of these picks were duds(Vick, Russell, Carr, Smith) and I will say Palmer is on the fence, but I’ll give him a pass. So out of the past ten years a #1 drafted quarterback, only one has a Superbowl ring, and only two have been to a Conference Championship game. In a perfect situation, the odds would be stacked against a rookie quarterback. Now St. Louis and Bradford have the added pressure of living up to this humongous contract.
I know there are some serious roadblocks between the Player’s Association and owners, but there is one thing that shouldn’t be a problem. There has to be a rookie salary cap in the next collective bargaining agreement. This is something that has spiraled out of control, and without that salary cap cannot be reigned in.
Erikka is the newest member of the BSO staff and resident female voice. You can follow her on twitter here.